Walmart, Target new policy not charging extra for self checkout

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Posts online claim the stores are limiting self-checkout lanes to customers who pay for subscription services. Here’s what Walmart and Target told VERIFY.

Target just announced a new subscription service, called Target Circle 360. The new plan allows customers to pay $49 annually to receive perks including free same-day delivery from Target and over 100 of its retail partners. Retailer Walmart also has a subscription service called Walmart+ where customers can pay $98 annually to receive perks like free shipping and additional discounts.

Viral posts online claim that Walmart and Target will now be charging customers for self-checkout and limiting use to those with subscriptions to the store. A VERIFY reader reached out to ask if these claims were true. 

THE QUESTION

Are Walmart and Target charging customers to use self-checkout?

THE SOURCES

THE ANSWER

This is false.

No, Walmart and Target are not charging customers to use self-checkout.

WHAT WE FOUND

Walmart and Target are not charging customers annual fees to use self-checkout. While both retailers have subscription services, the programs do not include exclusive access to self-checkout kiosks.

Target recently announced new changes to its self-checkout, however, there is no mention of limiting access to only Target Circle 360 members. The updates include a new Express Self-Checkout option and the ability for store leaders to mandate self-checkout hours based on store needs. 

Target representative Loni Monroe confirmed to VERIFY that “Target is not charging customers to use the self-checkout.”

Walmart is also not closing or restricting its self-checkout to subscribers, Walmart representative Robert Arrieta told VERIFY.

Walmart does require customers to have a paid subscription to use its “scan & go” feature, which allows users to scan items as they shop, using their cell phone. Customers paying with “scan & go” must still complete their purchase at the self-checkout kiosk, however, the kiosks are not limited to Walmart+ subscribers using this checkout option.

While Walmart is not shutting down its self-checkout kiosks, all kiosks in a specific location may not be open during all store hours. Similar to Target, Walmart locations also have the option to limit hours that self-checkout kiosks are available for use based on staffing and customer traffic. Arrieta explained that the set hours may have contributed to the online confusion since customers may have seen self-checkout kiosks closed down at a specific time, while Walmart’s Spark delivery drivers can use them at any time. 

The VERIFY team works to separate fact from fiction so that you can understand what is true and false. Please consider subscribing to our daily newsletter, text alerts and our YouTube channel. You can also follow us on Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook and TikTok. Learn More »

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Walmart, Target new policy not charging extra for self checkout

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